Insights on business -- and life.
Craft Therapy Could Inject a Healthier Bottom
A website that shows how crafts are good for
consumers' health, and for business.
by The Craft Practitioners (September 7, 2009)
Self described crafters listed health as one of the top five
reasons they work on a favorite craft, whether it's scrapbooking,
needlework, or any of their other creative pursuits according a
survey by CHA.
Long known as a therapeutic treatment by art and occupational
therapists, more and more people recognize that they feel better
while crafting. Can manufacturers find a healthier bottom line by
tapping into this trend? Yes. Kathy Peterson, an award-winning
designer and host of LifeTime TV's The Balancing Act and
founder of Craft For Health (www.CraftForHealth.com),
believes that this is just the right prescription for the craft
Peterson, who is known as Crafty Kathy and has established
relationships within the industry, spotted this trend and
immediately grasped the potential to not only engage with crafters
in a curiously new way, but to also reach the 40% of consumers who
do not consider themselves as crafters.
Having published five books and hosting a successful and
long-running craft TV series on several cable networks, Peterson has
a long and successful history within the craft industry and believes
that Craft for Health makes sense for everyone.
Peterson partnered with nurse practitioner Barb Dehn, also known
as Nurse Barb on ABC TV's The View From the Bay in San
Francisco. Dehn teaches at Stanford and sees patients in a private
practice in Silicon Valley and brings an unexpected blend to the
team with her medical and health expertise. Dehn & Peterson see
the potential of blending health into crafting to reach more people
who will be interested in facing life challenges by Creating
Not just for illnesses
"Parents are looking for ways to help their kids unplug from
video and computer screens and reconnect with the family," says
Peterson. "When parents can work on a project shoulder to
shoulder with their kids, conversations can start. Parents are
looking for healthy alternatives and activities they can share with
their kids and do together.
Craft For Health may be just the right way for parents to
reconnect with their kids and for craft manufacturers to reconnect
with the consumer who would otherwise never visit a craft store.
"Forty percent of people over the age of 40 have some type
of chronic or invisible pain," says Nurse Bar., "Many do
not find complete relief from pharmaceuticals or other treatments.
And, yet, we've seen many people turn to crafting to express their
creativity while feeling useful and productive."
An epidemic of interest
Since launching Craft For Health in May 2009, The Craft
Practitioners have been overwhelmed with stories from around the
world, media interviews, and guest appearances. They share
interesting stories of how one woman crafted her way to a 50-pound
weight loss, while others use crafting to cope with chronic
illnesses and depression, and how a wounded Iraq war veteran with a
traumatic brain injury re-gained eye-hand coordination while
crafting and painting models.
The stories and ideas keep pouring in, as Kathy and Barb explore
how to infuse unexpected ideas into product development, craft kits,
media tours, and more. These two women are passionate about making a
positive difference in people's lives and believe that crafting is
not only fun, but will provide a myriad of therapeutic benefits.
From Autism to Alzheimer's, and for all the healthy folks in
between, The Craft Practitioners, have ideas for injecting more
Crafting into all of our lives and quite possibly helping the
industry's financial health.
For more information on The Craft Practitioners and Craft For
Health, visit their website, www.CraftForHealth.com,
or contact them directly at Kathy-Barb@CraftForHealth.com.